Everton manager Roberto Martinez is tipping summer signing Muhamed Besic for big things after witnessing the Bosnian midfielder’s performance in the weekend’s 1-1 draw with rivals Liverpool.
Arriving from Hungarian outfit Ferencvaros for £4 million after starring at the World Cup, the 22-year-old produced an assured outing in his first Premier League start at Anfield, and Martinez was hugely impressed with how he handled the big occasion.
‘Nothing fazes him. It’s easy to forget he only turned 22 this month but he is a very mentally strong player with a lot of belief in himself,’ he told the Liverpool Echo.
‘Mo has a big-game mentality and he’s very focused. He has everything to suggest he can go on and become a big player for us.
‘Against Liverpool I thought he was very controlled and not overwhelmed by the occasion in any way. For him it’s the bigger the game, the better.
‘This is a young man who rose to the occasion at the World Cup when he was playing in the Maracanã Stadium for his country in a high-profile game against Argentina.’
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With Everton fighting on all fronts this season following the previous campaign’s fifth-place league finish, Martinez is confident that Besic will become an integral part of the lineup once fully integrated into English football, and added that the former Hamburg prospect is already one of the most popular figures in the Goodison Park dressing room.
‘He’s very focused and low maintenance to work with,’ the Toffees boss said. ‘But he’s also a very passionate player and a good guy. He is warm on the inside even if he doesn’t show his emotions often.
‘The players know they can trust him and rely on him and he has fitted very well into the squad.’